Money roundup video: Tax deadline and pension protection

The Independent’s Personal Finance Editor Simon Read talks over the latest Money news

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The Independent Online

This week tax deadline; pension protection; and compensation for mis-sold credit card protection.

Tax deadline this Saturday: Act today - delay and you’ll be fined £100

The tax return deadline is midnight on January 31 - Saturday night - and those who file late will automatically receive a £100 fine.

An estimated two million people are yet to file their returns, according to HM Revenue & Customs.

The automatic penalty of £100 for filing a late return is charged even if you don’t owe any tax and then, after three months, a £10 daily charge kicks in up to a maximum of £900, followed by further penalties at six months and 12 months.

Delaying means you could owe up to £1,600 in penalties even if you don’t owe any tax.

Help and advice is available from the self-assessment help line on 0300 200 3310.

Pension protection: the City Watchdog is forcing firms to question people’s financial decisions under new pension freedoms in April

The Financial Conduct Authority has told pension firms to ask consumers more questions to help protect them from making a serious mistake when new pension freedoms come into force in April.

The Financial Conduct Authority has today written to chief executives of pension providers to outline plans to introduce additional protection for those accessing their defined contribution pension pot, a so-called second-line of defence for consumers.

Companies will be required to ask about health and lifestyle choices or marital status, to protect consumers who do not take up the government’s offer of the Pension Wise guidance guarantee service. Pension firms will then have to give consumers risk warnings, such as the tax implications of whatever decision they make.

Firms will also have to further highlight the availability of the government’s new Pension Wise scheme or regulated advice.

Full story here.

Consumers can now seek compensation for mis-sold card security and protection

Some 2million people could be in line for compensation for being sold cover they didn’t need. Average compensation would be £25 for products such as Card Protection and Sentinel. One of the features of the card security products was insurance to cover fraudulent use if a card was lost or stolen. But this was unnecessary because the customer’s card issuer was usually responsible for any transactions after the cards were reported lost or stolen.

Eligible customers will get a letter from AI Scheme Limited in the next few weeks. In April or May they’ll get an invitation to vote on the Scheme. If the Scheme is approved there’ll be a simple claim form to complete. Do not be tempted to use a costly claims management company to help them make a claim.

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